Cards versus letters: Which is better?

There are countless occasions to send a card. There also are endless reasons to write a letter. 

A thoughtful gift deserves a heartfelt thank you note. Hearing a friend has hit a rough patch calls for at least a few words of support. Falling in love can inspire romantic notes that would make Nicholas Sparks blush. Our favorite reason to write is the just because variety. Regardless of if it’s an inside joke that makes you laugh until you cry or a kind word to remind a friend that they are wonderful on a whim, we’re always fans for sending a dose of positivity in the form of a pep talk via snail mail.

With more ways than ever to connect, it’s important to choose the right medium for your message. Seeing as April is National Card and Letter Writing Month, we wanted to break it all down for you.


Cards are the most user-friendly form of correspondence. Primarily because their design helps convey both the sentiment and tone the sender wants the receiver to receive.

Cards come in handy when there is a specific event or occasion, like a holiday or birthday, and the purpose of the card is clear. Add in a concise message and that will do the trick.

A card can have a preprinted message inside or it can be blank. Either way, including a handwritten note always adds a heartfelt personal touch.


Of all the forms of correspondence, letters are the most personal. Mainly because of the energy and intention they require to compose.

Writing a letter is best when you feel compelled to share your thoughts, feelings, and wishes with a specific person.

Personal letters are typically handwritten, while business letters are traditionally typed up and printed out on letterhead.

Picking your paper

Just as there is a time and place for a certain kind of letter, there also is a time and place for a certain kind of paper. 

As a rule of thumb, card stock is used for personalized stationery and cards, while lighter-weight papers are used for letters. Within these two categories of paper, you’ll find many different weights and textures.

Boxed stationery

Boxed stationery is the term used to describe flat or folded note card sets that include matching envelopes. The sets can be simple solid-colored blank cards; however, they typically have a design o rare themed for a specific occasion (i.e., thank you, etc.).

While the styles may vary, the defining factor of boxed stationery is that they are purchased as-is, without personalization, and are sold in sets so you have more than one on hand at any given moment.

One way to make boxed stationery feel personal is to select a motif that features the initial of your first or last name. May we suggest these?


Cards come in two types of styles: Pre-printed and blank.

Both styles feature designs on the front; however, pre-printed cards often include text on the inside that makes a specific reference to the purpose of why the card is being sent. Blank cards, on the other hand, allow you to write any message you want.

We like to mix it up and use a hybrid version like these—pre-printed with a message on the front and lots of room to add a personal message on the back.

Personalized stationery

Personalized stationery is traditionally printed with your monogram, name, or even an illustrated portrait. This type of stationery is an extension of your personal style, be it formal, casual, playful, modern, or traditional.

For this reason, it’s ideal to keep two sets of personalized stationery on hand—one for business contacts and another version for friends and family. If you prefer to start with a single set, we recommend choosing a simple design you would feel comfortable to both your mom and your boss.

We use our personal stationery for hellos, thank yous, condolences, and just because messages. Really, personalized stationery is good for any sentiment you want to elevate with a classy touch.

For business communication, we find including a personalized note paper-clipped to the top of the letterhead adds a personal touch of warmth to the message.

Interested in personalized stationery? Make sure you’re on our email list as we’re launching this offering soon!


Letterhead is thinner paper that can be run through a printer and can be folded into a business-size envelope. It’s the best choice for professional correspondence.

If you run your own business and send letters frequently, you may want to invest in having your logo added to letterhead to be used in formal communication. Aside from your logo, other items to include on your official letterhead are name, address, phone number, email, and website. 

We use letterhead for business communication, resumes and cover letters, letters of recommendation, and all official correspondence as it adds polish and gravity to business matters and formal affairs.

Note: While it’s common practice to use printer paper, letterhead is traditional meant to be printed on 100% linen watermarked text-weight paper. Because of its weight and texture, linen watermark paper is more expensive than what you would use every day in your printer.

Need stationery to help you send a card or letter? Tap right here and we’ll get your stationery sorted.

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